The 85th Academy Awards telecast might be getting mixed reviews, but if there was one highlight all critics can agree on, it’s Dame Shirley Bassey‘s performance of “Goldfinger” during the James Bond 50th anniversary tribute. In addition to that number, the 76-year-old Welsh diva also recorded the Diamonds Are Forever and Moonraker themes, and so it seemed to be a no-brainer for the Academy to have Bassey on board for the homage.
It also seems a given that we’re falling in love with this royal Dame all over again. See how the Internet reacted to Bassey’s big performance at the Oscars below.
:: The Los Angeles Times was smitten with the Dame: “Her voice has lost a little sharpness, but it has still aged into a rather forceful presence, as Bassey spread her arms, and twisted ‘Goldfinger’ into ‘goldfingahhh,’ it was as if she believed at this very moment that the money-obsessed villain of Goldfinger was a real-life threat. As the orchestra swelled, Bassey’s voice remained largely level. She didn’t go to the melody, the melody went to her.”
:: ContactMusic.com noted, “The stage legend gave a typically effortlessly performance and was quite rightly given a huge round of applause by the celebrity audience, with actress Reese Witherspoon in particular appearing blown away from the rendition.”
:: Screen Crush quipped, “Aside from Adele’s first live performance of the Skyfall theme (and Seth MacFarlane’s sock puppet re-imagining of Flight), the 2013 Oscars featured a video tribute to James Bond… And the cherry on top of the segment was a performance of the famous Goldfinger theme song by Shirley Bassey, proving to the world that she still has it.”
:: Chart Rigger had this to say: “I truly love Adele’s Platinum-selling ‘Skyfall,’ and think it deserved to win the Golden Globe, BRIT Award and, now, Academy Award that its racked up. And while her performance of the James Bond theme at the Oscars last night was truly grand, it was really Dame Shirley Bassey who stole the effing show with ‘Goldfinger’.”
:: Hollywood.com was equally head-over-heels: “As many a wine-based analogy has taught us, there are many things that get a whole lot better with age. But some things don’t really have to — they were just fine to begin with. That can be said of the great Shirley Bassey, the singer who immortalized the title theme to the 1964 James Bond classic Goldfinger.”
:: The Village Voice‘s Michael Musto basked in Bassey’s glow: “Shirley Bassey was masterful singing ‘Goldfinger’ as part of the James Bond tribute on tonight’s Academy Awards. She did the song with measured tones, taking her time, and going for the gold (finger). She really throated it out, and by the end, as I was sitting there thinking ‘Will she hit the note?’ she struck it like a gong. A triumphant moment for Shirley and she soaked in the standing ovation like a true diva.”
:: VIBE summed up Bassey’s triumphant performance with this: “You may not be as familiar with Shirley Bassey as you are with her voice. This year’s Oscars marked the 50th anniversary of the James Bond films, and what better way to honor that than to have the person behind the classic 007 song perform. Adele may have done a new rendition to the movie’s song, but nothing beats an original.”